What’s love got to do with it? Everything

What’s love got to do with it? Everything

“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.” —Martin Luther King, Jr.

Earlier this month our country looked back and remembered the fallen as we marked the 20th anniversary of 9/11. I remember, as a 15-year-old, how it felt when our country took a long, deep breath in and for a time began waving the flag unapologetically. Loving one’s country wasn’t wrong, and saying “God bless America” was the popular thing to say. We came together as one body and one voice. All races, all different viewpoints, came together as the American voice.

Now, over the course of time, we lost that. We began the endless fighting amongst ourselves. We have the attitude of “us against them,” and I for one am sick of it. I am not saying we shouldn’t have a difference of opinion, but we should be loving the other person. I think if we could have a cup of coffee with Jesus, he would ask us why we aren’t loving the way he loved — not brushing things under the rug but showing people how much we love them first and then dealing with their sins.

To love is messy from time to time, but our hearts will be filled with joy when we choose to love. Hate can seem like the easiest thing to do, but in fact, hate is one of the hardest things in the world. It takes so much from our life — our joy, peace, happiness, time and so much more. I know hate can look attractive and can be enticing, but in the end the only person who ends up hurt is the person who is doing the hating. The other person often doesn’t even know they are the object of hate.

So many times I have hated people, and so many times I was the only one who ended up hurt. However, I keep on struggling with hate. I know it is no good for me. Every time I forgive, the feelings pop up somewhere down the line. I try to be a man of love, and I keep on thinking I already had forgiven them. However, let’s be honest: There is a part of us that would want them to hurt as much as we ourselves are hurt. I always feel bad when I do that because then I think I am no better than them, and I don’t want to be hurt like that myself.

I think our society doesn’t want to deal with emotions, although we need to mourn over the hurt and acknowledge it. If we just bury it, then like a zombie, it will rise from the grave again, but if we look it in the eye and give it time, then hopefully we can have a better reaction to it.

No one wins when our emotions go into overdrive. We end up hurting the very people we love. It is so true that hurting people hurt others. I wonder if we take our time and think about the situation and the people involved if we can approach people from the position of love instead of the position of hate.

Next time we are tempted to hate, we should take our time and think about the situation. Remember the person may be as hurt as you are.

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